Rodman's N. Korea trip off to uncharacteristic low-key start

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Kim was accused of espionage and subversion, and was brought before the cameras in March a year ago to deliver a highly choreographed confession, similar to the one that Warmbier was made to give.

During the meeting, North Korean diplomats agreed to allow Swedish diplomats in the North, who serve as the protecting power for American citizens, to visit USA detainees, including Otto Warmbier, the 22-year-old University of Virginia student held since January last year, the report said.

Fifteen months later, Mr. Warmbier - gravely ill and in a coma - was medically evacuated from North Korea on Tuesday and on his way to his parents' home in Cincinnati.

North Korea has woefully inadequate medical care and it is not clear how North Korean doctors had been caring for Warmbier during more than a year in an unconscious state.

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson refused to provide details, though one official told The Post that the release had nothing to do with the latest freakish excursion to Pyongyang by former National Basketball Association player (and Trump reality-show contestant) Dennis Rodman.

Warmbier's plane landed at Cincinnati Municipal Lunken Airport at around 10.15 p.m. local time (0215 GMT), according to a Reuters witness.

The Obama administration had attempted to gain access to American hostages through Swedish diplomats, but North Korea refused to give them access to the prisoners. At the meeting, North Korea agreed that Swedish diplomats could visit all four American detainees, who at that time included Warmbier.

A hospital spokeswoman didn't provide an update on his condition.

They said: "We want the world to know how we and our son have been brutalised and terrorised by the pariah regime" in North Korea. He was said to have lost consciousness after contracting botulism and taking a sleeping pill - an account that strains credulity.

But Rodman added that he believed Trump is "pretty much happy with the fact that I'm over here trying to accomplish something that we both need". "Over the past 18 months they've had to go through something that no family should have to bear".

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The BBC's Stephen Evans in Seoul says it remains to be seen if Mr Warmbier's illness is the direct result of brutality in prison. An ambulance took Otto Warmbier from the airport to the University of Cincinnati Medical Center. On this trip, he has already been roundly criticized by some for visiting during a time of high tensions between the USA and North Korea over its weapons programs and recent missile launches.

Former NBA star Dennis Rodman says he's going to North Korea to try to open a door.

Warmbier's parents, Fred and Cindy, confirmed their son was on a medevac flight.

Joseph Yun, U.S. special representative for North Korea policy.

"We are thankful that he is on his way home", said Heather Nauert, State Department spokeswoman. His parents told The Post that North Korean representatives suddenly informed US officials last week that the student was in a coma.

"Although to date economic coercion has been ineffective in persuading North Korea to abandon its pursuit of nuclear weapons, this does not mean it can not work", writes David Thompson, a senior analyst with C4ADS.

Warmbier's parents hadn't heard from or seen him since he was sentenced in North Korea's Supreme Court in March 2016 to 15 years in prison with hard labor for attempting to steal a propaganda poster at the end of a five-day tour of North Korea.

Any visit to North Korea by a high-profile American is a political minefield. "Otto should have been released from the start".

People in the OH hometown of a college student released by North Korea said they are pleased he is back and expressed hopes for his recovery as he remained in a coma. It began offering classes in English to the North Korean elite in 2010.

"Even though they're saddened by his condition, they're just glad for the family that he is home".